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Afghanistan
3:58 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

As Karzai Visits U.S., What Are The Prospects For Afghan Peace?

Afghan President Hamid Karzai will meet with President Obama and other senior U.S. officials in Washington this week. Many analysts remain skeptical about the prospects for a negotiated peace in Afghanistan. He's shown here speaking in Kabul last month.
Massoud Hossani AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 6:16 pm

As Afghan President Hamid Karzai comes to Washington to meet with President Obama and other U.S. officials this week, there is renewed discussion in Afghanistan about the possibility of a negotiated end to the country's war.

Recent talks hosted by France have rekindled hopes for some sort of reconciliation between the Taliban and Karzai's government. But given the decades of war in Afghanistan, many think the prospect of a peace deal remains nothing but talk.

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Commentary
3:50 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

Online 'Shaming' A New Level Of Cyberbullying For Girls

Sixteen-year-old Rookie Reporter Temitayo Fagbenle says at her school girls are often the victims of "slut shaming," having explicit photos and videos of themselves posted online and shared with their peers.
Joerg Koch AP

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 5:19 pm

Many teenagers are living half their lives on social media sites, and they're writing the rules as they go. One online trend 16-year-old Temitayo Fagbenle finds disturbing is something she calls "slut shaming" — using photos and videos to turn a girl's private life inside out. Temitayo reported this story as part of the Radio Rookies program at member station WNYC.

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The Picture Show
3:39 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

National Geographic Photo Contest Winners

"I was surrounded by thousands of fish that moved in synchrony because of the predation that was happening. It was an incredible experience."
Fransisca Harlijanto National Geographic Photo Contest

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 12:32 pm

National Geographic last week announced the winners in its annual photo contest. According to the contest website, they received more than 22,000 entries from amateur and professional photographers around the world.

Here's a selection of the winning images, including editors' picks, viewers' choice and honorable mentions. You can see the rest on their website.

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The Two-Way
3:31 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

What Lance Armstrong, And The USADA, Might Gain From A Confession

Lance Armstrong, seen here at a LIVESTRONG Challenge Ride in October 2012, might be willing to confess to doping — in exchange for an easing of his lifetime ban, according to reports.
Cooper Neill Getty Images

Originally published on Tue January 8, 2013 8:23 am

The news that disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong might be willing to confess to the doping charges he spent years denying has reopened interest in his case — and in the question of whether his lifetime ban from competitive sports could be eased in exchange for Armstrong's cooperation.

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Asia
3:07 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

China Pledges Reforms To Labor Camps, But Offers Few Details

Ren Jianyu poses for a photograph at a restaurant in Chongqing, China, on Nov. 19, 2012, after being freed from a labor camp. The village official was sentenced to a "re-education through labor" camp after he criticized the government.
STR Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 7:23 pm

China has indicated that it will stop handing down sentences to its controversial labor camps, which allow detention without trial for up to four years. According to Chinese media, some 160,000 prisoners were held in "re-education centers" at the end of 2008.

Critics of the system greeted the announcement — which was slim on details — with cautious optimism.

Pressure to change the system has been mounting after a number of high-profile cases, including that of Ren Jianyu, who had been a young village official.

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Europe
2:15 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

Berlusconi Plots His Comeback: 'You Italians Need Me'

Former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi (left) has returned to Italy's political scene in advance of next month's election. Also in the race is the current Prime Minister Mario Monti (right). They are shown here in November 2011 as Monti took over for Berlusconi.
Alberto Pizzoli AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 5:19 pm

With elections in Italy just weeks away, polls show leftist parties with a comfortable lead. Yet attention is focused on the battle between the former prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, and the current prime minister, Mario Monti, an austere technocrat.

Monti's platform calls for continued austerity, budget cutting and labor reforms.

While Berlusconi and Monti are the two big names in next month's race, the expected winner is the leader of the leftist Democratic Party, Pier Luigi Bersani.

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The Two-Way
2:12 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

Aurora Shooting Suspect Looked Like A Fellow Officer, Police Say

James Holmes faces multiple counts of first-degree murder and attempted murder in the July 20 theater shooting in Aurora, Colo. Here, he's seen in a photo from the Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office.
AP

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 5:19 pm

Moments after a deadly attack that turned an Aurora, Colo., movie theater into a scene of panic and tragedy, the police officer who found suspect James Holmes at first took him for a fellow police officer, due to the body armor Holmes was wearing.

But he noticed that Holmes was "just standing there" and had no sense of urgency — despite the pandemonium at the theater, as people continued to stream out.

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Medical Treatments
1:15 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

Is It Pain Or Dependency? A Doctor's Dilemma

Originally published on Mon January 7, 2013 2:31 pm

While most causes of accidental death are on the decline, drug-related deaths are increasing. This is due in part to the increase of deaths caused by prescription pain medication, like Vicodin or OxyContin. A Los Angeles Times investigative series looks at how doctors are contributing to the trend.

Politics
1:09 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

The Consequences Of A Short-Term Farm Bill Fix

Transcript

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

This is TALK OF THE NATION. I'm Ari Shapiro in Washington. Neal Conan is away. Well, Congress averted the milk cliff. A five-year farm bill was set to expire, and it could have doubled the price of milk if that had happened. But instead of passing a new five-year plan, Congress extended parts of the old farm bill. That renews subsidies for grain, cotton and soybeans; it cuts budgets for some organic and environmental initiatives.

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Photography
1:04 pm
Mon January 7, 2013

White House Photographers Describe Documenting The President

President George W. Bush takes a breather on the couch with his dog Miss Beazley.
Eric Draper White House Photo Office

Originally published on Wed January 9, 2013 12:30 pm

Each time the president steps to a microphone or podium, dozens of camera shutters snap like tap dancers in a show. Most of those cameras belong to reporters, but not all of them.

Some are in the hands of White House photographers. Almost no one has as much access to the president every day, in public and behind the scenes.

Eric Draper worked as the White House photographer for President George W. Bush. "You're part of the staff," he tells NPR's Ari Shapiro. "You serve the president. And what that means is I had an all-access pass.

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